I have recently been diagnosed with Asthma, I am 36 so this is adult onset.
My journey started a couple of years ago when I had a bad flare up following exposure to a large amount of dust (the office air conditioning unit was serviced by my desk and produced what I can only describe as a dust shower). I suffered with quite bad breathlessness and coughing. I saw my GP at the time who said it did seem to be an allergic reaction considered the possibility of asthma and prescribed me inhalers, firstly just a reliever but when it didn't clear up a brown preventer which did do the trick. When I saw the doctor again I questioned a diagnosis of asthma but he shrugged me off saying that I would need lots of tests and it would be better just to keep using in the blue inhaler before exercise and in cold air (as seem to be triggers for me and in hindsight had been for a while).
I managed like this until last October when I had another flare up, my chest was really tight and I was really breathless, struggling to even walk around the house, it became really uncomfortable and my chest was sore through the strain, I was also getting light headed and lacking energy. I obviously left it too long but I was pretty desperate by the time I phoned the doctors and when I couldn't get an appointment just asked them for a prescription for a brown and blue inhaler which they agreed to. It did improve and within a few weeks I was feeling quite a bit better but made an appointment at the doctors to discuss my lingering cough and any next steps (eg how long should I continue with the brown inhaler and did I actually have asthma?).
I saw a new doctor at the practice who was really nice, listened to everything I had to say, examined me and advised that she did think I had asthma but couldn't do any tests because I had been taking a preventer inhaler for too long for the results to be meaningful, she gave me the option of coming off it but neither of us thought this was a good idea so she diagnosed based on symptoms and sent me for a chest x-ray to be on the safe side re the long lasting cough. The x-ray was clear, I got reviewed by the nurse and got my flu jab, I continued with my Clenil inhaler, taking 2 puffs morning and night each day. Things were going OK and I only had to use my blue inhaler in cold weather and for long walks.
Unfortunately, I had another flare up again just before New Year after cleaning my bathroom with strong cleaning fluids (silly I know). This resulted in a bad cough and some breathlessness, it was getting better but yesterday it flared up badly again and I am pretty sure I had my first actual asthma attack. It was awful I could hardly breath and could barely talk. I followed the guidelines using my blue inhaler and eventually my breathing did improve but I felt pretty lousy (light headed). I took the rest of the day off work and rested up for the afternoon and I managed to get an appointment with at the doctors where I saw the original doctor. He has really confused me by questioning if I even have asthma as I don't wheeze 'very much' and my peak flow was about 300 (not that great for a 5f 6 woman), he also questioned how I can suddenly have asthma if I don't smoke or work with chemicals. He advised me to up my brown inhaler for a few days to 4 puffs twice a day (why, if I don't have asthma?) and asked me to book in with the nurse for spirometry tests, I questioned this as I have been on prevention medication for months but he said it would be OK. He said because I didn't wheeze allot even I did have asthma it must be really very mild and nothing to worry about. This opinion is very different from how I and those around me feel, who have all noticed that it is getting worse and are quite concerned.
I'm really sorry for the long post but I wanted to provide some context / backdrop to my question. Can anybody offer any advice I am so confused and feel like a fraud, I don't want to have asthma anymore than anyone else but what I do need is an explanation and effective treatment for my symptoms.
Thanks in advance,